First I am going to do my best to make time for my blog. I am giving myself 10 minutes to write this and add a few pictures – the less time you have to think the more you will write from the heart. Sometimes it is the same when you are doing a photo shoot you can sometimes capture the character of someone in five minutes.
I see that my previous post was about my A A D exhibition and it was extended until the end of January and I have took down all the images – which are now on the floor in a corner of my studio. The project was fun but putting the exhibition together took a lot out of me and other people – I feel after much soul searching that it was worthwhile . I know I made some new friends and produced some interesting images. Also it is a personal project and it was good for the soul. I am going to continue with the project but first I need to repair the Hasselblad 500 I was using – if anyone can get my viewfinder repaired please get in touch.
So far in 2014 I have photographed and seen some of my favourite bands/artists Adam Green, Obits, and Maximo Park. Also I was super proud to be commissioned to shot Maximo Park for t In The Studio piece which appeared in the NME in January. had to keep it a secret since I took the pictures at the beginning of December.
Looking ahead it is shaping up to be a great year already looking forward to gigs in the coming week by The Orwells, Toy, Radkey, Drenge and others
I am also continuing with my Instamatic for the People project of instant print pictures. Adam Green as part of my Instamatic for the People project
This is one of my favourite images from my A A D project I love the colours and how relaxed the band were. Despite numerous technical difficulties we managed to get some decent shots. This image was shot in bulb mode with a second curtain flash. With a Hasselblad 500cm
Looking forward to seeing more Telegram gigs and hearing more recordings. This shot is from The Shacklewell Arms Christmas party – did I tell you we won the pop quiz 0n the night 🙂
Adam Green as part of my Instamatic for the People project
“Without People You Are Nothing” – this quote from Joe Strummer has resonated with me. Although I work alone mainly in my photography I could not do it without people to photograph or help me.
Tonight is the opening of my A A D exhibition at The Cluny.
At the time of writing I am so busy as I have to finish up preparations for the exhibition so I will keep this brief
However I want to thank every band that has taken part there are 28 and counting I will name them all and add a gallery soon.
Thank you to the bands playing tonight So What Robot, Retriever and The Union Choir – it is an absolute honour that you are playing the gig as part of the opening.
As ever The Cluny have been absolutely fantastic and always helpful and friendly. Paul Burgess has done a magnificent job with the posters . Digitalab have done a fantastic job with the printing on a very short notice. Mark at Art for Art’s sake has done an amazing job framing everything yesterday morning – an absolute star.
Tonight Daniel Robson and Lewis Norvid are doing the DJ duties – I am super grateful that I do not have to worry about the music I know it will be amazing. A huge thank you to my wife Jill for her help and editing skills. Thank you to everyone who has helped me and publicised he exhibition. Also check this article out by NE;MM it perfectly describes my project http://nemmonline.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/david-wala-a-d-photography-exhibition.html
Also as well as the people I need to use a camera 🙂
The camera that has been used for most of my project
This has been used to take every picture in the exhibition
I finally managed to get a vinyl copy of the latest Hooded Fang album Gravez, as well as catch up with the band after doing a shoot with them last year. I took some portraits with my Instax camera – great band great people. For more shots from the gig click on the image below
Well I thought I would put together a review of my year in 2012 – mainly for my benefit to reflect on the things that I have done, and to judge how far I will have progressed when I look back next year. I have been lucky to work with some super talented and creative people in 2012- for that I am forever grateful
This was my first full year as house photographer at Newcastle o2 Academy – during the year I shot over 250 gigs there and at other venues. I have also done an array of music videos and photo shoots. I will try to put some of my highlights below.
The year started with me getting busy finishing the edit of the video for the single Your Melodica by The Union Choir. A year later and I still feel very proud of my first music video. I am looking forward to their album this year
Later in January I took on a commission to film Bridie Jackson and the Arbour album launch at their sold out gig at Gateshead Sage . It was a real test we used five cameras and a load of memory cards. We even filmed the two support acts Matt Stalker and the Fables, and Nathalie Stern. I spent most of January, and February editing this. It was a challenge and has led to more people commissioning my work.
Later in the month I did an impromptu photo shoot with Bird Island
At the end of the month I done the last ( for the moment) of my live acoustic High Bridge sessions with Tusk. Which we filmed in my studio – I love this band. I stopped doing these just because of limited time – I would like to do more of these in 2013
During the month I was busy shooting bands
The Maccabees Newcastle O2 Academy 29 January 2012
February kicked off with Howler at The Cluny – where I got hit by of all things an apple thrown from the stage
Howler Newcastle Cluny 1 February 2012
It was a pleasure to do the first promo shots for Symphonic Pictures. I done the last Detroit Social Club photo shoot with Johnny and Dale, it is nice symmetry that I have done the first photo shoot with their new band. I can’t wait for their new EP later this year – they work so hard and have some fantastic tunes.
They were also the first band to take part in my AAA project ( more details of this project can be found in a earlier post) – here is an image from the shoot
In February I also started work on the Natasha Haws video for her first single Stepping Stone. It is a beautiful song. It was a real pleasure to work on this
Some of my live shots from February
Those Furious Flames Newcastle Academy 4 February 2012
Shinedown Newcastle Academy 10 February 2012
Blackout Kerrang Tour Newcastle Academy 12 February 2012
Metronomy NME Awards Tour Newcastle Academy 9 February 2012
Brand New Newcastle Academy 16 February 2012
Melanie C Newcastle Academy 26 February 2012
Bridie Jackson and the Arbour Gateshead Central Bar 29 February 2012
Gem Andrews Gateshead Central Bar 29 February 2012
March was a relatively quiet month – I was shooting a load of gigs and editing videos. The highlight being at the end of the month when the summer came to the North East coast and we filmed a live session by Fantasy Rainbow ( I just wish we could have better sound ). We were all blown away by the sheer talent of his performance. All the videos from this session are from one take. Ollie just got out of his car played his songs and left
Some pictures from March
Black Stone Cherry Newcastle Academy 20 March 2012
Killing Joke Newcastle Academy 13 March 2012
Ajimal Newcastle Lit and Phil 19 March 2012
You Me At Six Newcastle Academy 27 March 2012
In April we filmed a gig at historic Morden Tower featuring the mighty Watchers and the Chapman Family. It is great to have had an opportunity to film at a venue that is steeped in history . It was great that two of the best live bands around kept it loud for their sets. I am especially proud that the NME picked up the Watchers video for their powerful song Cut The Ribbon. Looking forward to more great things from them in the coming year.
I also filmed the last song of the night Kids by the Chapman Family
This was also a fun shoot with Darren Hubbard of Distraction Records for Narc magazine. Outside the public toilets on the Bigg Market.
Some of my live shots from April
The Futureheads Gateshead Sage 8 April 2012
Brilliant Mind Newcastle Cluny 6 April 2012
The Watchers RPM Courtyard Newcastle Record Store Day 2012
Architects Newcastle Academy 10 April 2012
May started with a trip to London to shoot the Dan Sartain at The Lexington – which was wow. One of my gigs of the year
Dan Sartain The Lexington London 5 May 2012
I made a video for the Greeting Committee single Show Me The Lights of Home. It was a real fun shoot in adverse conditions – it was a rainy bank holiday weekend when we shot the outdoor footage. We all made the most of it and we made a mad video – of which I am immensely proud. We all put a lot of time and effort in planing and making the video on a very limited budget. I should also thank again Dan Horn for teaching me so much during the location shoot – and doing a great job as the man in the cow suit
A promo shot we took during the second day of the location shoot
I visited paris at the end of the month and got to see and shoot the mighty Howler – I think the shot below my favourite live shot of 2012
Howler Paris Fleche d’Or 26 May 2012
The first weekend of June was the weekend of Evolution Festival on the banks of the Tyne my image of T-E-E-D featured in the NME
T-E-E-D NME June 2012
Summer is a perfect time for outdoor location shoots – even in the North East of England.
We turned the inside outside with So What Robot to tie in with their single release Work and Play
We also got lucky with some early morning sunshine for a shoot with Tusk who have since signed with local innovative label Tiny Lights
You would think it was sunny on Tyneside during June – this shot is from a sunny June morning with Gem Andrews. I was also privileged to photograph Gem’s debut album Scatter cover in 2011
I also done a shoot with OFF! – it was such a buzz to be in the company of such legends – a little nerve-wracking but mainly very exciting
They also took part in my AAA project
Some Live Shots from June
July was the month I restarted my Instamatic for the People project of casual portraits of individual musicians taken with an instant print camera. One of my favourite bands Howler
relaunched this project .
Brent from Howler, and the rest of the band looking at the Instamatic for the People book
They also were happy to take part in my AAA project – here is the contact sheet
I also done another shoot with So What Robot I love working with these guys – we come up with ideas – then workout how to make it happen. They are always willing to take a risk
Some live shots from July
August was a surprisingly busy month with photo shoots and video making, but not so many live gigs to shoot
The first Sunday of August was spent in an Italian Restaurant doing a location shoot of the band Bison Hunting served up on a plate. It was such a fun shoot . I am so happy that our ideas worked practice as well as in theory here is one:
They also took part in my AAA project
I also done a shoot with The Watchers – we done the shoot at sunrise hoping to catch some golden light – but all we caught was some clouds and rain. However that did not stop us and we got some strong images.
So pleased they have taken part in the AAA project
For the shoot I did with Retriever – we did get that golden sun we were hoping for
They also took part in my AAA project on a different day at their practice room
Ollie Catt or Fantasy Rainbow also took part in my AAA project – he liked the images so much that he used them as his press shots and were featured in magazines and on websites
On the same night I took some shots of the Jacuzzi Boys – who were super friendly and definitely wanted to do some interesting shots. I photographed them for my Inatamatic for the People project and took a band portrait which is one of my favourite shots of the year and when writing four month on they are still using the shot as their Facebook page profile picture
I also done some shots with Franz Nicolay – the last time I saw him was when he was playing with the Hold Steady.
He also took part in my AAA project
I also made two videos in August the first for Sonner for their epic We Go Forth Tonight single – it was great working with them and I hope you like the video we made.
I also made a video with a completely different style and as much fun – super proud of this
Some live shots from August
September was mainly about live gigs and editing videos.
I did take this promo shot of Sonner when we were filming extra footage for their video in early September
Some live shots from September
During October I was busy with photographing and filming gigs.
I took this shot for Narc magazine of Fearbox
I took this shot and others from the Soundcheck before The Union Choirs gig at the Lit and Phil in Newcastle.
Some live shots from October
November was my busiest month of the year for gigs.
This is a digital shot used to test the lighting ( a modern day Polaroid )
I am also excited by a series of themed portraits that we have done with the super creative Peculiar Disco Moves. Here is one image from the series more will follow in 2013
I also made a video with The Prison Library of their song Certify which is part of their No Fireworks EP release. It was a challenging shoot as it was in a working studio so we were limited with the space and how we could light the room. However I love the energy of the song and the way that we have captured it.
You can see the video here
As it was the end of the month it was also the last gig for Sonner . They played a storming set at Plugged Inn in Sunderland. Here is their goodbye picture
In December Rizzle Kicks were kind enough to stop their sold out gig O2 Academy Newcastle while I changed my memory card and pose for some shots… busted. Super cool guys. I never knew that I could still blush
Some live shots from December
Well that is my year in review – certainly fun, and very proud of my work . Thank you to everyone that has helped me out and worked with me throughout the year.
I am working at something I love doing and I hope I can keep moving forward in 2013
For the past 18 months I have had the framed prints from my Instamatic fro the People project in my studio
The other day I was looking at them and reflecting that since I started the project 2 and a half years ago that some of the bands have split up , other bands and musicians are on the verge of greater things ( also many of the people I did not know when I first photographed themand have since become my friends).It is also interesting to see the way some of the locations and people’s styles have changed. So I have decided to put al the images from 2010 onwards on my David Wala Photography Facebook page
Over the past months I have worked on a project using my Mamiya RZ67medium format camera. It is a series of portraits taken using an old-fashioned shutter release cable.
It lets the subjects press the shutter to make a self-portrait. It seems to make people more relaxed as they have some control as to when the picture is taken, which leads to some interesting shots.
This is the first in an ongoing project which so far features Symphonic Pictures, Off!, Howler, and Sound of Guns.
I am enjoying the challenge of shooting with film and have to pay particular attention to exposure levels and composition. Unlike in digital the images cannot be reviewed instantly. I am showing the full frame images ( uncropped) with minimal editing. I am still pondering about a name for the project, in the meantime I am going to keep on taking photographs
I must thank the bands for their time and getting involved with the project.
Please click on the image below to visit the gallery ( more images will be added soon ):
After taking a year way from my ongoing Instamatic for the People project I decided to restart it this week by photographing Howler.I have changed this project to include bands from outside of the North East of England – I want to make it inclusive as possible. Local writer Linsey Teggart summed up my project in her article for Narc magazine her article for Narc magazine – this sums up the article. Other information can be found mainly in my 2010 and 2011 posts in this blog.
On Friday while waiting for Howler who were delayed due to mechanical problems – I was wondering if they would have time to do some photographs ( I needn’t have worried they were super cool and very helpful even though they had been on torturous journey on the M1.). To pass some time I flicked through my book from the exhibition and reflected on how much has changed in our local music scene. It is interesting to see how fashions, and locations have changed as well as the people
This picture of Brent below shows rest of Howler engrossed in the book I think sums up their enthusiasm. As their album America Give Up has been the soundtrack of my year I think it is fitting that they are the first band to be photographed for the relaunch of the project. This has given me a real boost.
Brent from Howler, and the rest of the band looking at the Instamatic fro the People book
I would also love to photograph all the people from the original book next year as part of this ongoing project.
The book is still available to buy from Blurb books click on the image below – all profits go to Teenage Cancer Trust. It is also available for iPad and iPhone as a download
I would once again like to thank everyone that has taken part and to Howler for being the first people of 2012. I am looking forward to see where this project take us – hopefully to another charity opening and gig.
PS I will be putting up an online gallery soon of all the images as I take them – I have more to add from some amazing people which will be added soon
Nearly every day I use my digital camera. So I am excited about starting a new film based project – I have already started this and I can’t wait to put some of the images online ( this should be next week) .
I am also firing up my Instax camera to do some more images from my Instamatic for the People project – more details will also follow for this.
This is a personal project and I am looking forward to new adventures ahead